All posts tagged success

A damned lie

Published October 27, 2012 by Sandee

Hey everybody wish me luck. Tonight I’m having an author reading from my home-made book, Mean-Spirited Tales.  I’ll read two regular “mean” stories and part of one horror story in honor of Halloween.  It’ll be at a local café.

My friend came by the other day.  He told me that he finished my book.  I asked him if he saw any errors in it and he said no.  I did catch two in the Kindle version, before the hard-copy was published. I fixed them though.  It would’ve sucked worse if there were errors in it after I had paid somebody two hundred and fifteen million dollars and ninety nine cents to edit it.  I’ve seen this before – books from “reputable” publishers with errors.  I saw a mistake in An Arsonist’s Guide to Writers’ Homes in New England.  I wonder if Brock Clarke saw it.  It made me not feel so bad about the errors in my home-made book.

Before I published my book I read this WSJ article about another home-made book that did really well.  So I did the same thing this author did as far as advertising, etc.  I might have missed something though, because hers sold a gazillion copies – ha!  She said she didn’t spend more than $1500 I think.  I spent less than that.  Let’s see, she bought a review from Kirkus – check – she bought an ad on Goodreads – check – but I swear I don’t remember her saying anything about an editor.  I did have friends look at some of my stories.  The one published in Calliope, Night Terrors, only needed a couple of edits for clarity so I thought I had a handle on editing, although ‘they’ say never edit your own stuff.   Ah but bunk it!   Maybe I’ll do it for my novel – hire a cute boy editor.

Of course I’m one in the legions who harbors a fantasy that my home-made book will be the next self-published success story.  Aghh!  At this point I’m just happy that people are reading the book that I wrote.  No that’s a damned lie.  I want to be the next self-published success story.

Everyday is brand new where anything is possible, right?

Published July 17, 2012 by Sandee

Wouldn’t it be great if I could maintain the idea that my success should be defined by the quality of my relationships with people?  It would be cool if I could make my goal everyday to be of service to people simply in my attitude or otherwise.  If I appreciate that work is a place where my success can be demonstrated in how improved my relationships with my coworkers are, then I can be more easily satisfied with my life.

I feel satisfied when I offer my help without any expectations or think of work as a place where I can be of service to people, leaving my ego out of it. It’s an accomplishment to figure out a way to get along with difficult people.  A difficult relationship can be a challenge that helps me.  I try to understand where these people might be coming from. I also examine myself truthfully, to handle negative feelings I have about them.  I stay humble and try not to be so easily offended.  I don’t walk around beatifically, but I want to give off energy that makes me approachable. Sometimes it’s not like that though.  I don’t want to talk too much about this because I fall short, as it should be — that’s where the lessons are.  I’m not a guru.  Life sucks a lot of the time and I am not a Pollyanna.

A woman at my job had a hiatus.  When she came back she said she had been thinking about me.  She said that I helped her see things in a positive light.  She gave me a gift.  Actually she gave me two gifts, one was a physical gift along with a card and a special note to me, the other was the gift of love and appreciation.  Another example of this type of success I experienced after a job assignment that I had was over.  The office manager there said that she would miss my smile.  She said I was a class act.  I realized that I succeeded in what I was trying to accomplish, that what I had hoped to transmit was actually received.

A Philosophical Bum

Published April 3, 2012 by Sandee


I want my sister’s sons, my nephews, to be scientists.  Who the fuck am I to determine this?  A neurotic, self-centered, overbearing relative, passing down baggage.  This is a reflection of my ego.  Sure, it would benefit them to have these careers perhaps, but it would primarily benefit me.  I’d bloat up and tell eeeeevverybody how brilliant MY nephews are, and it would make me feel like I was the success – I could hide my insecurities behind it.  Listen, I could have been a scientist, but I chose to — well…we won’t go there…

But really I’m not that bad.  I only want them to have some advantages.  I am also full of crap as I claim not to have any bourgeoisie aspirations.  This idea for vocations for my nephews is warped – it’s my idea of what an advantage for them would be.   I could’ve had my own kids, but didn’t want any.  I didn’t want to create any more lost souls on the planet besides, I didn’t have faith in my gene pool.  Yeah, I said it!

So, I want the four year old to be a neurosurgeon, and his little one year old brother to be an astrophysicist.  Is this over-the-top or what?  Trystan is four, and Brandon is one in May.  When Trystan was two, I said, “Tell mama you’re going to be a neurosurgeon.”  He tightened up and said excitedly, “I like Vicks!”  He’d had a cold and his parents had been slathering him in it for the past few nights.  My sister says, laughing, messing with me, “He’s going to be a rapper, a break dancer.  Tell her.  Right, T?”  It could happen but I doubt it.  She and her husband are career-oriented people – but who knows.  Yes, and I know rapping and break dancing are careers too — but anyway — I persisted with my idea as T’s language skills developed — at the age of three, he’d acquired the subtlety of inflection.  “Hey Trystan, tell mama you’re going to be a neurosurgeon,” I say.  “Oo-kaaaay….I’m gon-na be, a, neurosurgeon,” he says tiredly, just to placate old aunt Sandee.  He then turned his back and loaded his dump truck up with cars.

The one year old Brandon doesn’t really speak now, but I read somewhere that they understand what you say to them.  They store it in their brains and can put it together later on.  I’ll try that theory.  I’ll go on ahead and “suggest” to Brandon that he is going to be an astrophysicist.

“I don’t really care what they are as long as they’re happy,” Debbie, my sister says.  Yeah, right, all parents say that tired-ass shit… She says that if Trystan was a bum living in the woods she would be fine with it as long as he had a philosophy for being there.  “He could be a philosophical bum,” she says.  It would make her proud that he was strong enough to reject the mainstream in support of his principles, she said.  A career can’t determine their success, she continued.  And I thought I was the deep one!